Wednesday, June 25, 2014

stream of consciousness

seriously, wtf? (even molly thinks so)
and she's also a transplant from the midwest.

when you live your life outside of the culture of your birth, no matter how "integrated" and part of things you think you are, there will always be moments where you are smacked up side of the head with the big old stick of feeling you don't belong. it can happen at the grocery store, in traffic, at lunch, at work, when people are late for a meeting or oddly if the stewardess skips your drinks order on a plane. but it's very worst of all when it happens in your home, among those you love and have chosen as your family. and the problem is that you can never really know when that feeling will strike. it's a feeling borne of a complex combination of factors and there's no way that i've found to predict when that combination will be exactly right, or rather, wrong, and it will hit you that you are still an outsider. and when it hits you, everything is magnified. the smallest thing becomes enormous and has the capacity to grow and grow in your mind, crowding out any of the feelings of belonging you may have harbored, and convincing you that they were never real. it's quite horrible, actually. especially because of how little it takes and how that thing can be so random and so subject to the fragile barometric pressure of feelings and hormones and possibly wind speed and temperature and butterflies in the amazon rainforest and the price of corn futures on the chicago exchange. and it's so distressing that all you've built up over such a long time can be so easily smashed and you feel like you're starting all over again and you wonder if you even want to. but you probably aren't, it just feels like that in the moment itself and the moments that follow. but it likely won't last and even as you're in the middle of it and you realize it's a complicated combination of the obliviousness your husband has to extended family matters generally (which is different than not caring, tho' it's hard to see that when you're in this place) and your own sadness that some of those you considered your favorite family members didn't come to sabin's party or even send her a card or offer a proper explanation of their absence, plus your chosen displacement from the culture of your birth and possibly a teency weency touch of pms thrown into the mix, you still find it very hard to be rational and non-emotional about the whole thing. all he had to do was tell you he received a text that his sister had a new baby girl and it would never have happened. this whole strange avalanche of tears and emotions and being reminded that you're an outsider could easily have been avoided, if only you knew what would trigger it. and ironically, you can't even learn from the situation, because something else entirely will trigger it next time. and you'll ride the roller coaster again. and you'll get through it. and probably the good bits of life wouldn't seem so good without the bits that seem pretty awful. and maybe that mid-atlantic feeling is just a permanent state of being.


Jody Pearl said...

…all that and more Julie, like most men and women are from different planets [mars&venus?].

rayfamily said...


Sammi said...


I hope you're feeling better.

The thing is, even if you were back home after all your time in Denmark, you never really feel like you fit there either. I've been back in the UK for 4 and a half years, and there are still times when I just cannot get my head around WHY the Brits do things the way they do... at least when I felt that way in Spain, I had the excuse I was a foreigner. It is very strange being an expatriate, it makes you a foreigner in your own country.

Also, men are so oblivious all of the time. I'm the only girl in my workplace, but it has taught me that I have to Really. Spell. Things. Out. if I want to get myself heard, and what not. It definitely makes me want to marry a man even less than I already do, haha!


miniARTtour said...

love to read this